Being a survivor of trauma, and visiting a place which embodies the meaning of trauma, I was overcome by emotion as I sat below the Survivor Tree. After withstanding the blast of the bombing in 1995 and burning for several days, this tree still stands as a symbol of human resilience, hope, and rebirth. Despite the 4,000 lb. bomb which killed 168 people and injured hundreds, the tree continued to struggle for survival. With the help of the community, the health of the tree began to improve. Seeds were taken and seedlings were grown. The Survivor Tree has re-birthed hundreds of offspring which serve as reminders of the undeniable life force within us.
The tree continues to thrive....
There is life after loss. The life-force within us propels us to press on and to nurture each other as we grow.
Survivors of all types....we know this. The moving on is bittersweet, but it is ripe with possibility. Having risen from the ashes, like this tree, we just keep going.....reaching for the sky.
As I move forward in my journey with limb loss, I look toward a future of possibility, and a chance to share my passion for adventure with others with disabilities. When faced with significant life-challenges, we can shrink back from life, wither away, or embrace our challenges as unique opportunities for connection. Herein lies my passion.....harnessing hope and connection, and finding meaning in shared life-enhancing experience. How cool is that?
(NOTE: I will do an update on my medical stuff soon! Just needed to get this post out first....the timing was right.)